Monday, June 6, 2011

Saigon Day 1

Taking a trip down memory lane... Nah... i didn't come to Saigon prior to this trip. This is my first time here and i will say it is good. =) Considered the fact that I only got my air ticket and left for Saigon with a small backpack.

I left Singapore the very next morning after my last exam on 25th May... at 7:30am on 26th May and reach there about 8:40am (Saigon time) They are one hour behind us. To my pleasure the check in crew assigned me the emergency exit seat and hence the extra leg space. =)

Upon arrival in Saigon, i changed my money at the arrival hall. Exiting the arrival hall, you will be greeted by "friendly" ladies asking you to do your money changing there. I changed 300SGD at the rate of 16060 dong per dollar. After which, i left the arrival hall acting like i know the place bloody well. I got no choice to act like that cause if you don't, the cab drivers will approach you. Luckily my friends told me that there is bus that goes to Ben Thanh Market at 4000dong which is like 30cents? 

The bus no is 152 and that is the only bus. Just follow the signage and you will see the bus. Board the bus, pay and get the ticket. Watch out for Ben Thanh Market along your way. It shouldnt take you more than 30minutes to reach Ben Thanh. They will drop you at the Bus Terminal but that is not the end of the journey, so you better not think you are going to see a bus interchange like Singapore and that's it. That is the first bus terminal they will stop and then they will go to the next bus terminal. (cannot consider bus terminal for 152 cuz' it doesnt terminate there, haha) So so so... please look out.... 

After dropping off the bus, you will sure be greeted by the super crazy traffic. There is like no traffic light over there and i followed a group of girls to the centre of the roundabout and i was kind stuck there and of cuz overwhelmed by the traffic. I was at the roundabout contemplating for a while before i braced myself to cross the road like you own the road.

And you really have to learn this skill the very minute you reach there. If not I don't think u will ever cross any road there. =) Of cuz don't be stupid to cross the road when there is a bunch of them. I know i did sometimes which they will totally give you way. Not in Singapore. I think i pick up the bad habit there cuz i have been crossing the road like i own it back here.

As i said, i didn't make any arrangement with hotel so i went to the backpacker area and start looking for a hotel. I did lost my way over there. Walked for an hr before i finally found this hotel which my friend stayed before. Saigon Sports 3 Hotel. It is really worth it for 22USD with breakfast. The original price was 25USD. If you are staying with 2, i guess their rate will be 25USD without breakfast. And of course you can get better deal on the website if you want la. =) The room is not that bad and there is cable tv and WiFi. It is clean and def worth what i am paying.

And of course, don't know what to do there. I decided to take a half day city tour and look around. I don't have any map and def wouldn't be walking aimlessly in the town. If not, i will have to stay in hotel the whole day. The tour cost 8USD which i feel it is quite reasonable.

We went to this handicapped handicrafts workshop and they are using duck egg shells to do their art piece. Their work is unique and damn good but it is pricey. I didn't get anything. Wanted to get a tiger painting but it costs 90USD for a A4 size... =/ No money~

Up next we went to the Reunification Palace. It costs about 30,000 dong for entrance. Nothing much there. Did some photo taking and you see them on my facebook. =)

And of course the architectures are mostly by French. Damn cool. I wish my house will be built by the French with nice French interior somehow but of course with the tinge of Modern feel. =)

Nice weather of course. Look at the sky. I wonder how many of us actually take the time and look up the sky and breathe in and feel the wind listen to the sound around us. It was a blessing in disguise. Reflect and get to know more about myself. And decided on the next part of my life which i am quite happy to do this trip alone. 

Oh yes their Central Post Office. Decided to write some postcards back for my friends which i don't have the time to do it on the 1st day. I came back the 2nd day on my own. Decided that i shouldn't go for any tour and should rest more since i just finish exam.

The tour ended around 6pm. Met up with friends for dinner near hotel and went to a cowboy pub nearby. But the drink was killer. Expensive for their standard. Went back to rest and sleep till i feel like waking up. Look out for Day 2 of Saigon...

It may be boring but i am just keeping this for my memory. Read at your own risk!!!

Kaos... i think i need to improve on my language. Sounds like Primary school kids narrating and i guess the kids nowadays can do better than me. So many improper sentence structure. Pardon me!

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